How to Achieve Family Harmony? Wine Tasting.

Sorting Grapes at Fess Parker

By Guest Blogger Greta Boris
Fitness Expert and Author of "The Wine and Chocolate Workout"

We just had our annual family camping trip the first weekend of October. It has always been a fun event. We secure 4 or 5 campsites at El Capitan above Santa Barbara and any number of relatives show up in their camping trailers, pop-up tent campers, or tents. But it hasn’t always been easy to keep family harmony. Not that they aren’t wonderful, but extended family can get on each other’s nerves after a couple of days if they aren’t kept busy and entertained. A few years ago we came up with a way to increase the family harmony. Since the holidays are coming, with all they entail, I thought I’d share it. Wine tasting. It’s a wonderful way to get out in nature, learn something new and bond. A few years ago one of my brother-in-laws and I grew much closer singing the Davy Crockett theme song all the way home from Fess Parker Family Winery. Talk about bonding. This year we chose 3 tasting rooms in the beautiful Los Olivos area to visit. We started at Rusack Vineyards after a breathtaking drive through oak and vine covered hillsides. Rusack has a long and interesting history. One of the most fascinating bits of data we picked up was that Geoffrey and Alison Rusack are breaking new ground with their Santa Catalina Island Vineyards, something no one has attempted before. Apparently the results are stunning. We tasted their locally grown wines. My favorite was their Ballard Canyon Estate Syrah. It was jammy, aromatic and everything you expect from a Syrah. Next we wended our way to Koehler Winery. Two of my favorite things about Koehler, besides the wine of course, are the animals (cats, goats and ostriches) and the tasting room manager, Dan Zurliene. Dan is an acquired taste, much like their wonderful 2010 Granache. I find his unique sense of humor part of the entertainment. I enjoyed their 2010 Cabernet, the 2009 Reserve Syrah, and, of course, the Grenache which is waiting for the right occasion in my wine cooler. Our last stop was an old faithful for us, Fess Parker Winery. There are lots of reasons to love visiting. The Ashley’s Chardonnay, the 2009 Pinot Noir and The Big Easy are delicious and nostalgic. No matter where I am, when I open a bottle of The Big Easy it transports me to the Central Coast. Another reason to visit is their dog. My husband is always the DD on these treks, which would be a boring job but for the conversational skills of said dog. The staff at Fess are terrific too. As we were leaving, we were invited back to the harvesting area to observe the grape sorting. We felt just like a part of the family. Speaking of which, all of the wineries we visited were lovingly developed by families. Maybe my tip on maintaining family harmony isn’t that original after all. Apparently, wine keeps many of us singing in tune. I did mention the Davy Crockett theme song sing along didn’t I? The Wine and Chocolate Workout is a great addition to any boutique offering the better things in life. And, 10% of all profits go to The Orphan Care Initiative - Emptying Rwandan Orphanages. Carry my book, The Wine and Chocolate Workout in your wine tasting room. Click here for more information.

About the Author: Greta Boris is the author of The Wine and Chocolate Workout – Eat, Drink and Lose Weight. She believes that being healthy and lean doesn't require giving up either of the aforementioned luxuries. For tips on living healthy and happy…

Visit her blog at www.fitnessinsideoutoc.com
Follow her on Twitter @GretaBoris
Follow her on Facebook at Fitness Inside Out
By the way, she will write for wine.

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